Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, having called Japan his country’s closest friend in Asia, will seek this week to overcome Chinese unease about his loyalties in a region beset by territorial tensions.
The U.S. rejected Taiwan’s request for new Lockheed Martin Corp. F-16 fighters, offering to sell $5.3 billion in upgrades for existing jets in a move likely to avoid a repeat of the Chinese backlash from earlier sales.
Assistant Chinese Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu will visit Iran from Feb. 12 to 13 to discuss the dispute over that country’s nuclear program, Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin said at a briefing in Beijing today.
China’s assistant foreign minister Ma Zhaoxu met with an Iranian official in Tehran and discussed the possible resumption of nuclear talks between the Islamic Republic and world powers, the state-run Mehr news agency reported.
Diplomatic ties between the world’s second- and third-biggest economies soured as China escalated a dispute over Japan’s extended detention of a fishing boat captain for a collision in disputed waters.
China said it wants to maintain ties with Japan after demonstrators in the nations staged protests over a ship collision in contested waters last month that brought relations to their lowest in five years.